Florida Man laundered money for Reveton ransomware. Then Microsoft hired him

Former network engineer gets 18 months in the clink


A former Microsoft network engineer will be spending a sojourn behind bars after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Raymond Odigie Uadiale was this week given an 18-month sentence and three years supervised release – after he agreed to a plea deal that saw him cop to a conspiracy charge in exchange for a second count of substantive money laundering being dropped.

The 41-year-old Uadiale had been charged in the Southern Florida US District court for his role in the Reveton ransomware operation. Posing as a combination of ransomware and scareware, Reveton presented itself as a piece of law enforcement software, telling the user they had downloaded "illegal material" and demanding the payment of a "fine" in order to restore access.

"This was a sophisticated scheme to conceal the proceeds of a particularly insidious type of ransomware," said US Attorney Benjamin Greenberg on Monday.

"By claiming to originate from law enforcement agencies, Reveton not only victimized computer users, it also exploited the agencies in whose names the ransomware claimed to be acting."

Uadiale, who was a student at Florida International University at the time the crimes occurred in 2012 and 2013, was said to have received payments from victims in the form of prepaid debit cards. Then, using the Liberty Reserve digital currency, he transferred the plundered money into accounts controlled by himself and a co-conspirator, an unnamed distributor in the UK.

An angry, frustrated golfer bends a club over his head

Oh, fore putt's sake: Golf org PGA bunkered up by ransomware attack just days before tournament

READ MORE

Prosecutors estimate that, over the course of the scheme, Uadiale moved around $93,640 in ransom payouts.

"By cashing out and then laundering victim payments, Raymond Uadiale played an essential role in an international criminal operation that victimized unsuspecting Americans by infecting their computers with malicious ransomware,” said assistant US Attorney General Brian Benczkowski.

"This conviction and sentence is another demonstration of the Department of Justice’s commitment to prosecuting cybercriminals and shutting down the networks they use to launder their criminal proceeds."

During the lull that came between committing the crime and getting indicted for the crime, Uadiale occupied himself by moving to Washington state and getting a job with Microsoft as a network engineer. At the time he was indicted, Uadiale was living in the Seattle suburb of Maple Valley.

Microsoft has no comment on the case. ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • Prisons transcribe private phone calls with inmates using speech-to-text AI

    Plus: A drug designed by machine learning algorithms to treat liver disease reaches human clinical trials and more

    In brief Prisons around the US are installing AI speech-to-text models to automatically transcribe conversations with inmates during their phone calls.

    A series of contracts and emails from eight different states revealed how Verus, an AI application developed by LEO Technologies and based on a speech-to-text system offered by Amazon, was used to eavesdrop on prisoners’ phone calls.

    In a sales pitch, LEO’s CEO James Sexton told officials working for a jail in Cook County, Illinois, that one of its customers in Calhoun County, Alabama, uses the software to protect prisons from getting sued, according to an investigation by the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

    Continue reading
  • Battlefield 2042: Please don't be the death knell of the franchise, please don't be the death knell of the franchise

    Another terrible launch, but DICE is already working on improvements

    The RPG Greetings, traveller, and welcome back to The Register Plays Games, our monthly gaming column. Since the last edition on New World, we hit level cap and the "endgame". Around this time, item duping exploits became rife and every attempt Amazon Games made to fix it just broke something else. The post-level 60 "watermark" system for gear drops is also infuriating and tedious, but not something we were able to address in the column. So bear these things in mind if you were ever tempted. On that note, it's time to look at another newly released shit show – Battlefield 2042.

    I wanted to love Battlefield 2042, I really did. After the bum note of the first-person shooter (FPS) franchise's return to Second World War theatres with Battlefield V (2018), I stupidly assumed the next entry from EA-owned Swedish developer DICE would be a return to form. I was wrong.

    The multiplayer military FPS market is dominated by two forces: Activision's Call of Duty (COD) series and EA's Battlefield. Fans of each franchise are loyal to the point of zealotry with little crossover between player bases. Here's where I stand: COD jumped the shark with Modern Warfare 2 in 2009. It's flip-flopped from WW2 to present-day combat and back again, tried sci-fi, and even the Battle Royale trend with the free-to-play Call of Duty: Warzone (2020), which has been thoroughly ruined by hackers and developer inaction.

    Continue reading
  • American diplomats' iPhones reportedly compromised by NSO Group intrusion software

    Reuters claims nine State Department employees outside the US had their devices hacked

    The Apple iPhones of at least nine US State Department officials were compromised by an unidentified entity using NSO Group's Pegasus spyware, according to a report published Friday by Reuters.

    NSO Group in an email to The Register said it has blocked an unnamed customers' access to its system upon receiving an inquiry about the incident but has yet to confirm whether its software was involved.

    "Once the inquiry was received, and before any investigation under our compliance policy, we have decided to immediately terminate relevant customers’ access to the system, due to the severity of the allegations," an NSO spokesperson told The Register in an email. "To this point, we haven’t received any information nor the phone numbers, nor any indication that NSO’s tools were used in this case."

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021